Storm Rascal arrived in our house yesterday. He was followed later that night, as you know, by Storm Katie, who did all the usual stormy things, like blowing down fences, knocking over garden furniture and frightening
cats. Storm Rascal was much more fun.
Yes, Easter Day saw exactly half our family gathered together at Our Place for a curry dinner, Easter trail, potato and spoon races and General Mischief and Mayhem. We
numbered two Darling Daughters, two older grandkids - Jack and Hazel taking a break from their studies - Rascal and The Twinkles, plus Mr B and I. As regular readers know, I had prepared well in advance and it turned out to be such a very good idea. I will
do this more often.
I couldn't make up my mind whether to take a risk on the weather and lay the Easter Trail outside in the garden or accept defeat gracefully by setting it up indoors. My indecision proved
beneficial since I ended up taking advantage of the dry spells to marshal everyone outdoors for the next planned activity - before retreating inside each time the rain came down. The garden grew soggier and soggier, the children grew muddier and muddier -
but, hey, Rascal clearly remembered the Rules of the Game from last Easter, following a trail of mega blocks all around the garden with The Twinkles trailing in his wake wondering what this new game was all about. Underneath a large flower pot in the Secret
Garden, five eggs of varying size, including one shaped as a dinosaur and two tiny Peppa Pig eggs (nut free and no additives - not that The Twinkles were bothered).
It was an undoubted benefit having Jack
and Hazel's company. They showed, as always, admirable energy and initiative in entertaining the littl'uns. It also meant that there were five of us (grown-ups or almost grown-ups) and three of them (Rascal and The Twinkles) - from which you may conclude that
we were pretty equally matched. The Twinkles wore their butterfly rucksacks, complete with handy attached reins, which helped - though they still led their "handlers" a merry dance.
Jack and Hazel reminisced
about Easter Trails They Had Known. There were the woodland trails (drawn from my experiences in Brownies and Guides) and many a challenge involving clues in code. Little did they know, I told them, the hours spent putting these fiendish challenges together,
always at the very last minute. The Mega Blocks Trail was a doddle in comparison - though I dare say I won't be able to get away with it for too much longer.
Explaining the principles of the potato and spoon
race to The Twinkles was a Step Too Far for all of us but they did enjoy tearing round the garden with a spoon each. Why would anyone want to carry a potato on a spoon? they clearly wondered. Why did everyone have to run in the same direction anyway when it
is so much more fun trotting off in opposite directions? Why does winning matter? At the Great Age of fifteen months old, the Twinkles have much to teach us about life, love and potato and spoon races.
what are some of my favourite memories from the day? Mr B stealing a giant chocolate button off my Easter cake and thinking nobody would notice. Jack and Hazel, spoons and potatoes in hand, trying to coax the Tinies to race by example. Lilia, bless her, freaking
out at the smiling face on her chocolate bunny, necessitating a kiss and a cuddle to comfort her. Tala reading about Little Hoglet's Egg Race and pointing out the baby hedgehog - the hero of the story - on every page. Rascal in the bath with his Octonauts
Gup - Explore! Rescue! Protect! Or words to that effect. Our trip around the Palatine School garden, where trees have woolly blankets wrapped round their trunks to keep them warm, where wind chimes made from old cutlery hang from trees and round every corner
is a sensory surprise.
Ah, but my favourite memory has to be watching The Twinkles, Tala and Lilia, running round the back garden in their winged rucksacks, looking for all the world like two tiny
butterflies flitting here and there against a backdrop of dancing daffodils.
Pure Easter Magic!